Philanthropy Institute Subject Matter Experts
Phillip D. Adams serves as the Vice President of Institutional Advancement (VPIA) for Xavier University of Louisiana. As Vice President, he provides leadership of the University’s fundraising and development division and is responsible for designing and implementing comprehensive institutional advancement initiatives. Presently, Adams is providing staff leadership for Xavier’s $500 million Centennial Campaign.
Adams previously served as the Vice President for University Advancement at Savannah State University (SSU) in Georgia. Also, he acted as the Executive Director of the SSU Foundation and as the Director of Government Relations. He has served successfully at three Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) as Vice President for Institutional Advancement, exceeding previous records in gifts.
Adams has over 30 years of experience as a fundraiser and campaign director. Previously, Adams’ appointments included positions at Norfolk State University, LeMoyne-Owen College, Saint Louis University, and United Way of Saint Louis.
Adams is a veteran of the United States Air Force. He received a Master of Science degree from Golden Gate University and his undergraduate degree from Saint Leo University.
Marcus H. Burgess
Dr. Marcus H. Burgess currently serves as Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Claflin University, and most recently held the position of Associate Vice President for Major and Planned Gifts. Prior to his return to Claflin in 2019, Burgess served several institutions in a leadership capacity, including York Technical College in Rockhill, SC as the Executive Director for Campaigns and Strategic Initiatives; Florida Memorial University, Miami Gardens, FL, as the Vice President for University Advancement; and Voorhees College as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement.
Burgess is a native of Cades, South Carolina. He is a 1996 graduate of Claflin University where he earned a BS in Elementary Education a 2000 Graduate of The Citadel, earning a MS in Education Administration and Supervision, and a 2020 graduate of Vanderbilt University’s Peabody School of Education earning a Doctorate of Education in Learning and Leadership in Organizations.
He is married to Leandra Hayes-Burgess, Vice President for Institutional Advancement for Benedict College. Together they have three children Marcus (Deuce), Mariana, and Tyler.
Helene T. Carter
Helene T. Carter serves as Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Paine College where she was recruited and then promoted to lead a newly established Institutional Development unit designed to support Alumni Relations, Communications & Marketing, Scholarship and Endowment Campaigns, and render support for the team that directed the legislative agenda for the Institution.
Ms. Carter served on an elite team who steered the application that resulted in Paine College being listed in the National Register for Historic Places and declared a Historic District. In pursuit of membership with Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS), she led the Applicant stage for Paine College and currently serves as TRACS Liaison for the Institution. She developed strategies that increased the Annual Scholarship Fund and currently leads the UNCF Campus Campaign to meet and exceed its fundraising goal. In 2019, Ms. Carter cultivated the single largest cash gift from Paine alumni Dr. David and Mrs. Betty C. Peterson in the amount of $1.8 million that satisfied the outstanding mortgage on the HEAL Complex.
An avid relationship builder, she cultivated the Tom Joyner Foundation Campaign for both Claflin University (2002) and for Paine College (2010). Ms. Carter has served on the Historic $30 Million Capital Campaign Committee for Claflin University and carved her niche as an award-winning Editor and publisher for campaign publications that boosted the Campaign’s visibility. The publications were cited for design excellence by the SC Affiliate of the National Federation of Press Women. During her tenure at Claflin as Director of Public Relations (1998-2007) and Director of Special Events (2007-2009), she cultivated a USA Today feature story about the Call Me MISTER Teacher Education program headquartered at Clemson University with a satellite program at Claflin University. The USA Today article caught Oprah Winfrey’s attention and as a result, the Oprah Winfrey Angel Network donated $100,000 to the program which helped to reduce the Misters’ tuition.
Leandra Hayes-Burgess serves as the Vice President for Institutional Advancement for Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina. A native of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Leandra Hayes-Burgess has served as an advancement professional for higher education institutions and nonprofit entities for over 23 years, with 17 of those years dedicated to service in upper administration.
Over the span of her fundraising career, Leandra has successfully assisted colleges and universities, securing over $60 million in support of their missions, programs and services. She previously served as the Senior Development Director at the University of Miami, Assistant Vice President for Major and Planned Gifts at Claflin University, the Assistant Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Talladega College; Director of Development for Bennett College for Women; and Assistant Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Director of Alumni Affairs at Livingstone College.
She is a former cabinet member for CASE District III, and previously served as the HBCU liaison. Leandra holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication arts from Johnson C. Smith University, a Master of Arts degree in philanthropy and development from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota, a certificate in Management and Leadership from Harvard University and is a Certified Fund Raising Executive.
Leandra is married to Dr. Marcus H. Burgess, Vice President for Institutional Advancement for Claflin University. Together, they are the proud parents of three wonderful children, Marcus, II, Mariana and Tyler.
W. Anthony Neal
W. Anthony Neal is Senior Vice President for Institutional Advancement and Strategic Retention at Wiley College in Marshall, Texas. He has more than twenty years of senior level advancement and development experience at major non-profit organizations and higher education institutions.
A native of Tennessee, Dr. Neal started his advancement and fundraising career with the United Way of the Mid-South. Additional leadership opportunities with United Way organizations in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and North Carolina. Dr. Neal also served as the President of the United Way of Rome, Georgia.
Dr. Neal holds memberships in the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) and is a founding member of the African American Development Officers Network (AADO). An academically trained economist, Dr. Neal received a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Denison University, a Master’s degree from Central Michigan and a Doctorate of Philosophy degree from Jackson State University.
He has led fundraising campaigns for non-profit organizations and higher education institutions and has been personally responsible for generating more than $385 million in gifts and contributions throughout his career.
Neal is married to Patricia Newman Neal, a journalist, and they have three sons.
Dub C. Taylor
Dr. Dub Taylor is Vice President of Institutional Advancement at Allen University where he has collaborated with various stakeholders to craft an ambitious vision focused on several transformational goals. These include strengthening the College’s financial resources through new revenue generation, establishing partnerships that benefit the College and the community, and moving the institution back to the top of national HBCU rankings. As a visionary leader, Dr. Taylor draws upon his senior executive business experience to build strategic corporate partnerships, consult on legislative initiatives, secure financial resources, and drive university growth. He has achieved impactful results, such as increasing Title III grant funding from $1.8 million to $15 million within three years, expanding philanthropic support to 235 new donors in FY22-23, and assisting in securing over $40 million in funding for capital improvement projects, including the construction of a football stadium.
A native of Millry, Alabama, where he was raised on a family farm, Dr. Taylor contributes his relentless work ethic to his upbringing. He received his B.A. in History from Stillman College, an Executive MBA from the Jack Welch Management Institute, and a Master’s Certification in Strategic Selling from the Miller Heiman Group. Most recently, he completed the HBCU Executive Leadership Institute micro-credential program on navigating board governance and the Wharton Executive Education Program on Executive Presence and Influence: Persuasive Leadership Development. Dr. Taylor also holds a Doctorate in Business Administration with a concentration in Leadership from Walden University. He is committed to promoting a culture of academic excellence while strengthening stakeholder engagement, ensuring that the institutions he serves thrive and succeed.